MastersLaw has successfully defended public entities and their employees against a multitude of civil rights challenges arising in the law enforcement and other contexts. In particular, the firm has extensive experience in police litigation alleging constitutional violations and state law claims such as false arrest and malicious prosecution. MastersLaw also has experience litigating Monell policy claims, First Amendment speech claims, Equal Protection employment discrimination claims, and a variety of Due Process claims.
- Obtained affirmance of jury verdict in matter in which plaintiffs alleged police officer falsely arrested them and used excessive force in violation of their federal civil rights in the face of claims the jury was improperly instructed. Farnik v. City of Chicago, 1 F.4th 535 (7th Cir. 2021)
- Obtained affirmance of jury verdict in police officers’ favor. Court upheld the admission into evidence of a state court finding from a probation revocation hearing that plaintiff was in possession of a gun at the time of the incident at issue, affirming that the plaintiff could not relitigate the issue. Green v. Junious, et al., 937 F.3d 1009 (7th Cir. 2019).
- Successfully defended municipality against claims its policies to prevent suicide in lockup failed to meet constitutional standards. Lapre v. City of Chicago, 911 F. 3d 424 (2018).
- Affirming jury verdict that officers, who improperly executed a search warrant at plaintiff’s apartment instead of apartment listed on the warrant had not violated her Fourth Amendment rights. Balthazar v. City of Chicago, et al., 735 F. 3d 634 (7th Cir. 2013).
- Affirming summary judgment in officers’ favor that they had probable cause to arrest. Further rejecting claim regarding extended detention where, although plaintiff had been in custody more than 48 hours prior to probable cause hearing, at hearing judge revoked her bail from prior drug possession indictment; and rejecting claim for malicious prosecution where dismissal of murder charge was part of a plea bargain involving the drug charge. Bridewell, et al. v. Eberle, et al., 730 3d 672 (7th Cir. 2013).
- Affirming dismissal of complaint alleging that police officers unlawfully stopped a vehicle in which the plaintiff was a passenger and wrongfully arrested him on an outstanding parole violation warrant. The court adopted City’s position that a person wanted on an outstanding warrant has no right to be at large and therefore suffers no impingement on his rights when the police have probable cause to believe he is the person wanted on a valid warrant. Atkins v. City of Chicago, et al., 631 F. 3d 823 (7th Cir. 2011).
- Reversing district court’s order which had found City’s parade permitting ordinance unconstitutional and holding instead that it was a valid time, place, and manner restriction. McDonald v. City of Chicago, 243 F. 3d 1021 (7th Cir. 2001), denied, 534 U.S. 1113 (2002).